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Impact x2 Qais

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How can we work together to promote better cultural understanding worldwide?

Qais Akbar Omar (GRS’16), a graduate student in the Creative Writing Program, has published a much-praised memoir, A Fort of Nine Towers: An Afghan Family Story. He recalls how the violence and tumult of civil war jolted his family, who, despite losing relatives, their home, and possessions, continued to nurture his wish to attend a university.

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Atiya’s Journeys: A Muslim Woman from Colonial Bombay to Edwardian Britain

This is the original English translation of the first Indian Muslim woman’s experiences in the “West”. Atiya Fyzee’s (1877–1967), travelogue-cum-diary was published in an Urdu journal and then in 1922 as a book, Zamana-i-Tahsil. The narrative is unique as it moves away from formulaic European travelogues by Indian men and places particular emphasis on “everyday” activities of women and subaltern classes, dimensions which appeal to general readers and researchers alike today. Alongside lively accounts of local elites and prominent Indians abroad, Atiya provides descriptions of their clothing, meals, servants, homes, and mannerisms. The lucid translation and 48 photographs—some of them rare—are accompanied by meticulous annotations to the narrative and an introduction that provides the context.

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